False Prophet Protection
When Jesus was describing the end times, one of His statements was "MANY FALSE PROPHETS WILL COME AND CAUSE MANY PEOPLE TO BELIEVE FALSE THINGS". We live in a society that has whole industries to protect against fraud and deception in many areas. How do we protect against false prophets? Before we discuss intellectual approaches, we must remember that the one "called the Devil and Satan, who deceives the whole world" is the "the father of lies". We are not only against people whose false prophecies are self-serving but we must deal with spiritual warfare. Satan is behind the deception of false people who "perform great signs and miracles to deceive". In addition to spiritual warfare, we need to develop a habit of praising God when we see a sign or miracle and not having admiration for the person God uses to perform the miracle. Another area that Satan is preparing people for and Jesus warns against is His return being a secret. Jesus cautions his return "will be seen by everyone. It will be like lightning flashing in the sky that can be seen everywhere". The false teaching that Jesus will return secretly is so wide spread that some consider believing it as proof of being a "good Christian". To make it even worse, this false teaching results in many considering some of what Jesus teaches about His coming and some of what is revealed in Jesus' revelation to John as unimportant because they are deceived into thinking they will be gone before those things happen. 1
In addition to spiritual warfare, we need to follow the correct teachings. A leader of a large Christian denomination recently told over a million followers of their religion in a live event "that the best way to a personal relationship with Jesus Christ is through our Church". It is possible that 9 out of 10 church leaders would say the same thing and yet even non-Christians would be able to detect 9 different opinions about Jesus. Someone comparing two different denominations recently wrote, "Christianity is a complicated matter". People make it complicated with their manmade doctrines. By comparison, following Jesus is simple. The best way to protect against false teachings is to follow what Jesus teaches which is written in red letters in many translations. Remember the example of the Bereans who "examined the Scriptures every day to see if what Paul said was true". Jesus is very clear, if you "obey My teaching you will know the truth". To protect against translators' personal doctrines, it can be helpful to compare several translations if there is a difficult teaching. If a new teaching is heard, which is possible with so many pastors, evangelists, TV preachers, etc.; look up the scripture in the bible. Do not take their interpretation or opinion without viewing for your self what Jesus or God actually said. A common statement is "the bible says". If the teaching is based on what Paul or John or some other bible person wrote, remember only Jesus is "God's Son" and only Jesus says that God told Him "what to say". 2
1. Mt 24:11 (IC); Rev 12:9 (NKJ); Jn 8:44; Mt 24:24 (NI); 24:27 (IC)
2. Ac 17:11 (NI); Jn 8:31 (IC); Jn 10:36; 12:49 (NI)
note: click here for bible verse and translation abbreviations
A Psalm for reflection "How long will you love what is worthless and go after what is false?" Ps 4:2 (GN)
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Understanding the Teaching: What I share in the teaching is what I believe God wants me to share. All the direct quotes from God are highlighted in royal purple. Of course the words of Jesus are in red. Rather than follow some made up doctrine, remember that Jesus said that every thing He said (Jn 12:49) and everything He did (Jn 14:31) comes from God. All teachings and all opinions should be supported by what we learn from God or Jesus (see the scripture referred to in the footnote).
MARRIAGE WORKSHOP MOMENT
To refresh what you have learned in our Workshop or entice you to experience our Workshop
"Remember, all marriages can be better, if you use what you learned."
As couples are committed to each other, there can be personal dedication and constraint commitment. At first glance, constraint commitment which includes such things as social pressures, financial pressures, concern for the children or partner's welfare, termination procedures, moral factors, poorer alternative quality, etc. may appear to be lousy reasons for staying married but anything that helps you stay together is good, if it results in you working on your marriage. Research has shown that even in a very poor marriage the children usually benefit from their parents staying together. God said in Mal 2:16, "I hate divorce ". Regarding poorer alternative quality, Jesus discourages checking out what else is available when He says, in Mt 5:29 not to look at someone else "lustfully". If thinking that your partner will starve to death if you don't stay married, helps you stay married, I will not discourage you by suggesting anything to the contrary. The important thing as you stay married is to work on your marriage and the best way is to learn how to communicate better and resolve your problems with the skills you will learn in our Marriage Workshop.
The Better Half "When your partner won't support your efforts to make your marriage better" As you recognize that constraint commitment is helping you stay together, make use of that time by praying. Without your spouse's support to improve your marriage, you can still pray daily for God's will to be done in each of your lives and your marriage ("all things are possible with God", Mk 10:27 NI). Also make use of the opportunity of staying together by living in a manner that will improve your marriage like Jesus recommends in Lk 6:31 (TL) "Treat others as you want them to treat you".
Hi Followers of Jesus,
fyi, God said, "Do not put tattoo marks on yourselves" Lev 19:28 (IC)
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